Updated: Penguin Restores Library Lending To Kindle, But Not For New Ebooks

Penguin is once again making its e-books available to libraries through Kindle, OverDrive reports. New Penguin e-books, however, remain unavailable to libraries on any platform. Update, 11/28/2011: Penguin has issued a statement and I have updated this post.

OverDrive’s statement:

‘Get for Kindle’ for all Penguin eBooks in your catalog has been restored as of this morning. Penguin titles are available for check out by Kindle users and the Kindle format will be available for patrons who are currently on a waiting list for a Penguin title. This does not affect new releases, which remain unavailable.

We apologize for the inconvenience this caused for your library and patrons.

At this time, no further information is available. We hope to share more details in the near future.

Penguin also released a new statement, which is available in full at The Digital Shift. In part, it reads, “Penguin informed suppliers to libraries that it expected them to abide by existing agreements to offer older digital titles to libraries only if those files were held behind the firewalls of the suppliers. Following receipt of this information, Overdrive, a supplier of ebooks to US libraries, removed ‘Get for Kindle’ from its offering.” As Publishers Marketplace points out, this makes it unclear who is responsible for turning off “Get for Kindle”–Penguin’s new statement makes it sound as though OverDrive made that decision, while OverDrive previously stated that Penguin asked it to do so.

I speculated yesterday why Penguin is making these changes. Today it appears that some issues with Kindle may be resolved, but the overriding “security” concerns, it seems, are ongoing in Penguin’s view. Furthermore, Penguin e-books may only be available to libraries through Kindle until the end of the year.